To address the challenges that global marketers face when localizing content for global audiences, companies need to implement a solution that reaches beyond just translating content.
The solution is known as transcreation. Beyond translation alone, the transcreation approach is a creative, subjective, emotive process, where parts of the messaging are translated, but other parts are adapted for the target market.
Increasingly, this also means understanding the nuances needed to deliver messaging across different types of media and channels. For a transcreation approach to be successful, we recommend using experienced linguists that have experience creating materials for local markets, in line with the corporate message and cultural understanding, i.e. linguists who are familiar with your global brand guidelines, products and positioning.
To be successful, transcreation requires:
- An understanding of corporate marketing needs
- Careful planning from the start
- Giving the correct information to translators
- Time to translate (don’t rush it)
- Understanding local cultures and trends
- The ability to adapt messaging for relevant media and channels
- Joint investment in preparation and support
Tips for video translation
With the massive growth in popularity of video over the past few years, ensuring video content is accessible to local audiences is now paramount for brands. There are usually two core options for localizing video content, voiceovers and subtitling. These are outlined below:
This requires hiring a “voice talent” to record in a professional studio environment. This audio can be localized in two ways;
- Voiceover only. The video’s original voice audio track is turned off, and a localized voiceover is applied in its place. This method can pose a problem if the talent is speaking on-screen because lip movements may fall out of sync with the translated audio.
- Voiceover and original. Also known as “overdubbing,” this a technique where the volume of the video’s original audio track is reduced so the listener can still hear it.
These are on-screen translated text aligned to the original audio of the video. This can be in the form of animated text, titles or text that appears as part of a graphic. When producing subtitles, remember that they need to appear in time with the speech on-screen.
Sentence structure and length can be different for each language, which can mean subtitles need to appear differently for each language. For both of the above approaches, always try to provide your video localization vendor with the original video project file used to produce the video output. This makes it easier to align trickier aspects like on-screen text and audio to ensure the final output is timed correctly.
Once localized video content has been created, it also needs to be found. Increasingly people turn to video channels to search for relevant content, from how-to guides to entertainment content.
Searching for video content is popular. YouTube is now the world’s second biggest search engine, with over 3 billion searches per month. While YouTube is undoubtedly the largest video portal with over 1 billion unique visitors per month, it isn’t the only channel to consider when sharing video content. There are many locally popular video channels.
When creating and sharing video content, consider whether some of these popular video sites should be included in your global marketing activities:
Brazil: UOL, Vimeo, YouTube
China: iQiyi, PPS, Youku Tudou
India: Storypick, Upworthy, YouTube
Turkey: Dailymotion, Vimeo, YouTube
Russia: RuTube, YouTube
Stay tuned for step 6: “Translate your user generated content”